Chelsea Football Club has officially announced the appointment of Rafael Benitez as their new interim manager. The former Liverpool manager will replace Roberto Di Matteo following his sacking on Wednesday.
A 3-0 defeat at the hands of Juventus put an end to Roberto Di Matteo’s nine-month stint at Old Trafford. The Italian helped Chelsea win their first Champions League trophy and an FA Cup as an interim manager last season.
However, losing the top spot in the English Premier League and branding Chelsea and first defending champions to crash out of the Champions League from the Group Stages became the reason for his Roberto Di Matteo’s end at the London club.
Roberto Di Matteo’s third winless game in all competitions proved to be his last at the helm of the reigning European Champions. Ironically, it was the Italian who brought Champions League success to Chelsea.
In a statement released a few hours after the official announcement of Roberto Di Matteo’s release informed about Rafael Benitez’s appointment as the new Chelsea manager.
Rafael Benitez, who has been out of work for more than two years since his six-month reign at Inter Milan, has become the first manager to take charge of two Champions League winning sides successively.
Rafael Benitez’s appointment as the new manager of Chelsea was confirmed by a statement on the club’s official website. The statement informed that Rafael Benitez will be the manager of Chelsea until the end of the season.
“The owner [Roman Abramovich] and the board believe that in Benitez we have a manager with significant experience at the highest level of football, who can come in and immediately help deliver our objectives.
“The 52-year-old Spaniard is due to meet the players at the training ground in Cobham tomorrow.”
After Roberto Di Matteo’s sacking on Wednesday, Sport360° approached Rafael Benitez for an inside scoop on the whole saga. Rafael Benitez refused to talk about his appointment at the time, but now he is cleared to resume duty as Chelsea’s latest manager.
I have just found out [about Roberto Di Matteo]. Obviously Chelsea is a top side and they can compete for trophies so it goes in this category,” Rafael Benitez told Sport360°.
“You ask directly, I cannot answer directly,” Rafael Benitez said when he was asked about interest from Chelsea.
“In football a lot of people are talking so we will see what happens in the next few days. I am looking for a club that can challenge for trophies and Chelsea is one of these clubs.”